Road accidents are one of the causes of disability, injury and death. India has the highest road traffic accident rate worldwide with over 140000 deaths annually, beating even China. Every hour nearly 14 lives are lost due to road accidents. Most accidents occur during peak hours considered an unsafe or dangerous time due to complex flow pattern of vehicular traffic. Thus traffic engineers have to undertake a big responsibility of providing safe traffic movements to the road users and ensure their safety. Road accidents cannot be totally prevented but by suitable traffic engineering and management the accident rate can be reduced to a certain extend. This civil engineering seminar topics gives an insight into causes and remedies of Road Accidents in India.
Common causes of road accidents are speeding, careless driving, drink and drive, seat belt wearing inexperience, loss of control, failed to look properly, at work, unsafe vehicle design and lack of proper laws. Pathetic Condition Of Roads is also one of the important reasons. Pathetic Condition Of Roads is caused by defects in the quality of materials used, defects in construction methods and quality control during construction. It does not follow the correct geometric standards. Inadequate surface or subsurface drainage in the locality resulting in the stagnation of water in the sub grade or in any of the pavement layers. Lack of proper maintenance. Increase in the magnitude of wheel loads and the number of load repetitions due to increase in traffic volume. Settlement of foundation of embankment of the fill material itself. Environmental factors including heavy rainfall, soil erosion, high water table, snow fall ,frost action ,etc.
Steps To Be Taken For Preventing Road Accidents
1) Strict enforcement of speed limits.
2) One way traffic should be implemented.
3) Roads should be widened wherever required.
4) Curvatures should be minimized.
5) Footpaths and medians should be made mandatory for all important roads.
6) Zebra crossing should be provided.
7) Provide signals, road markings, sign posts..
8) Construction of humps in important places, accident prone areas ,etc.. And it must be mark properly to avoid accidents
9) Traffic rules should be strictly enforced.
Pavement Safety Factors are
1) Surface Texture
2) Pavement Roughness And Surface Distress
3) Pavement Shoulder Design
4) Rumble Strips
5) Passing Lanes
6) Time Of Day And Weather Conditon
7) Incorporating Road Safety Improvements
Road surfaces must ensure an adequate level of friction at the tyre pavement interfaces to provide safe operation of vehicles. Pavement surface properties are Micro texture – tyre pavement contact, skid resistance and Macro texture – drainage ability. Driving on roads in good condition, higher accident may occur due to high speed, lower skid resistance and some other safety factors. Single and multiple vehicle accident rates. To decrease single vehicle road accidents by reducing the roughness of the roads, which increase the quality of driving.
Pavement Shoulder Design should performs variety of functions such as Lateral support, Provides area, Provide easy driving, Safety zone for parking and Improve sight distance. Shoulder reduces accident rates for various lane width categories. Median shoulder width increases, accidents increases. Main functions of traffic engineering studies is to improve safety by Minimizing shoulder drop-off, Increase driver comfort and Reduce property damage.
Effective low cost method of providing guidance for drivers. Mainly helpful at the time of winter storms, which reduces the visibility of pavement marking. Installed wherever the shoulder width is 2m or more. On shoulders adjacent to climbing lanes, rumble strips may be installed on 1.5 m shoulder also.
Road system must have a wide paved lanes. It helps in reducing problems during overtaking and to avoid queues of vehicles on the road. It also provide adequate gap in the opposing traffic nor absence of solid barrier lines.
TIME OF DAY AND WEATHER CONDITION
These are highly related to road accident rates. About 68% of accidents occur during daylight hours while 27% occur during the hours of darkness and the remaining 5% occur during low light conditions. High accident areas can be targeted with innovative signing or reflectivity to ensure drivers are aware of their environment.